Tips to Use a Credit Card as a Debit Card
Though most companies won’t let you use regular credit cards like a debit card, you can use a prepaid credit card like a debit card. Prepaid credit cards work like debit cards, but they are accepted like credit cards. Though these types of cards won’t help you build credit, they can help you keep control of your money so you don’t overspend. Find the best deal. Just like regular credit cards, prepaid credit cards come with fees. However, because you are prepaying the fees are setup differently. Shop around to find the best one.
Look for one with a low setup fee. Some prepaid credit cards charge a setup fee. However, the fee isn’t the same for every card. Try to find one that is low or nothing.
Check the reload fees. Another place that prepaid credit cards hit you is with reload fees. Essentially, when you add more money to the card, some companies charge you again. However, some do not charge you a reload fee, which can make it more economical. Pick one with a low reload fee or no reload fee, if possible.
Look for other fees. Other companies tack the fees on in other places, such as if you try to take cash off the card at an ATM. Still others may charge you to check your balance or if you try to make a purchase without enough money on the card. Try to find all the hidden fees before agreeing to a card.
Check the monthly maintenance fee. These types of cards also usually attach a monthly fee to the card. Of course, you want to find the lowest one you can to avoid paying too much just to keep a credit card on hand.
Look at the fee structure. Some companies may not charge you fees if you put enough money on the card at the beginning. Others require a certain balance to waive fees over time.
Buy a card. Once you’ve picked out a card, you essentially purchase it by loading it with money and paying any purchase fee. Because you always preload the card, you will not need credit approval. However, you will need to have a way to add money. You can use cash to load these cards, as long as you do it in a store that sells them. Many of the big box stores sell prepaid credit cards. Be aware that most of them have a minimum load amount along with the purchase price.
Register your card. Generally, you go online to register your card, and input information such as your address, your card number, and your phone number. It’s important to register your card because if you lose it, your company may be able to recover or refund your money.
Check the limit. Different cards have different limits. If you need to make big purchases, you may need one with a bigger limit. Cards can range from as little as $500 to unlimited. Read More